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What Wilkins and Minshew Will Bring to the Raiders

The Las Vegas Raiders made two big moves on the opening day of NFL free agency, landing defensive tackle Christian Wilkins and quarterback Gardner Minshew. Las Vegas attacked the two most needed positions at the start of free agency. The Raiders have not had a defensive tackle with Wilkins's skill set for a long time. Minshew will compete with Aiden O'Connell for the starting quarterback position.


Christian Wilkins

The Raiders signed Wilkins to a four-year, $110 million contract with the Las Vegas Raiders, including $84.75 million guaranteed. In Wilkins, the Raiders will get one of the best defensive linemen in the NFL to complement Maxx Crosby. 


Behind Wilkins, who has 336 tackles since being drafted in 2019, the Miami Dolphins had one of the better run defenses in the league last season, finishing seventh in rushing yards allowed (97.1) and fifth in rushing yards per carry (3.8). 


Wilkins also improved his pass-rush skills; he had nine sacks, 23 quarterback hits, and 61 pressures. The Raiders need a defensive tackle that can stop them and rush the passer, and they get the in Wilkins. Also, like Crosby, Wilkins is an every-down player. He does not like to come off the field.


Gardner Minshew

Minshew signed with the Raiders on a two-year $25 million deal, with $15 million guaranteed. Minshew finished last season 7-6 as a starter for the Indianapolis Colts. He completed

62.2 percent of his passes for 3,305 yards and a 15-9 TD-INT ratio, keeping the Colts in the fight for the AFC South through the season's final week.


Minshew is a solid quarterback option; he is a veteran and an excellent short-term answer for the Raiders quarterback position. He plays well within a system and can strike with some big plays. He has grit, and he is a team-first player.


I still expect the Raiders to draft a quarterback, but having a veteran like Minshew on the roster will help the Raiders a lot. Expect the Raiders to keep on adding more talent during free agency. They need help on the offensive line and need to bring in more defensive talent.



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